Check Your Health: Fighting the Spread of Germs


(KUTV) Fighting the spread of illness starts with a bit of Spring cleaning. There are a few things that can help prevent sharing germs when you or a family member are sick.

Whether you’re not feeling well or you’re taking care of someone else who is sick, handwashing needs to be a top priority.

“Hand hygiene is basically the cornerstone of trying to prevent infections,” says Dr. Petronella Adomako with Intermountain McKay-Dee Hospital.

Since we all touch our face, eyes, mouth, or nose at some point during the day, we need to make sure those hands are germ-free.

“If you have the opportunity to wash your hands in public, great. But we know that that’s not feasible so you can use a hand sanitizer as long as it’s 60% alcohol based. That should be effective,” says Dr. Adomako.

In addition to clean hands, we also need to clean our environment. Bleach and/or disinfectant wipes are very effective in doing this. Beware of kitchen towels and sponges. These items can be germ magnets.

“You cannot use your sponge over and over again. After a while, it becomes contaminated with viruses and bacteria so you have to dispose of those on a regular basis,” says Dr. Adomako.

If someone in your house has been sick, do an extra cleaning of kids’ toys, the bathroom, and comfort items like blankets and pillows.

Finally, if you’re sick, stay at home. Avoid going to school or work if at all possible.

“If you have to go into the environment, you can wear a mask. When you cough, cough into a tissue if you have that or cough into your upper arm,” says Dr. Adomako.

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